Mayo General Hospital held a very successful information day on quitting smoking in the hospital recenty. The event was organised by Claudia Oliveira, respiratory scientist and Michelle Redmond, a/respiratory clinical nurse specialist. The aim of the day was to inform members of the public, patients, and staff of the importance of quitting smoking. In addition, visitors to the information day were offered a carbon monoxide (CO ) test. CO is a poisonous gas that has no colour or smell. It is one of the products found in tobacco smoke and this breath test can tell how much CO a smoker has in his/her body.
Also, spirometry testing was provided which is another simple and painless breath test to measure lung function and can aid the diagnosis of COPD. COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease ) is a general term for a number of chronic lung disorders including bronchitis, emphysema, and chronic airway disease. It is estimated that 440,000 people in Ireland suffer from COPD and the most common cause of COPD is smoking.
Michelle Redmond, a/respiratory clinical nurse specialist, advises: “If you are a smoker, quitting is one of the best things you can do for your health. There are over 4,000 chemicals in every cigarette and at least 55 are known to cause cancer. Smoking damages the natural cleaning and repair system in the lungs and traps the cancer-causing chemicals in the lungs. This damage to the lungs puts you at risk of a number of diseases including lung cancer and COPD. For further advice on quitting smoking, visit www.quit.ie, call the National Smokers’ Quitline on 1850 201 203, or join www.facebook.com/HSEquit ”